John Lee Dumas has interviewed more than 1,500 inspiring entrepreneurs as the host of the EOFire podcast, and has successfully launched two action-oriented books on productivity; "The Freedom Journal," which walks you through accomplishing a single goal in 100 days, and now "The Mastery Journal," a "step-by-step guide to mastering productivity, discipline & focus in 100 days."
I asked JLD to share his top five tips, tricks and habits for being your most productive self each and every day.
1. Plan Ahead
"I like to call this 'Win Tomorrow Today'," Dumas says, "All it takes it setting aside five minutes every evening before you end your work to establish the ONE goal you will accomplish tomorrow."
Sometimes, the hardest part of getting things done is deciding which thing to work on first. If this decision making has to happen first thing in the morning, it can create a roadblock to progress, which is no way to start your day.
"By giving yourself a head start the night before, you're allowing your most productive work hours--in the morning--to be leveraged to the fullest by not having to wonder about or choose what you'll work on first."
2. Fine-Tune Your Morning Routine
"Having a morning routine is one of the best things I've done for myself," Dumas says. "It not only helps me set my day up for success by gaining powerful momentum first thing in the morning, but it also allows me to guarantee that I'm going to get a set number of things done right away. This way, no matter what my day brings, I've already accomplished a number of things that are most important to my health and nutrition."
Dumas says his morning routine includes a workout, hydration, meditation, and ensuring he gets the nutrients he needs to perform at a high level all day.
"It's a huge plus to use your "Win Tomorrow Today" mentality to set your morning routine the night before so you know exactly what to do when you wake up in the morning," he says.
3. Break Work Into Sessions
One of the common mistakes people make is to focus entirely on whatever task is next on their list and promise not to move or pause until it's done.
"Tasks will expand to the time allotted," Dumas cautions. Instead, he advises taking inspiration from the Pomodoro technique and setting up timed periods for both focused work and breaks.
"Establishing sessions where you have a set amount of Focus Time followed by a set amount of Refresh Time helps you avoid distractions and make massive progress on the tasks and projects you're working on," Dumas says.
4. Make Time For 10-Day Recaps
Being extremely future-focused and ambitious is great, but if you're always moving from one task to another, you could be missing out on a big growth opportunity.
"In order to learn what's working and what's not working, you need to allow reflection time," Dumas says. He recommends setting aside some time at least every 10 days to reflect on the good, the bad, and everything in between.
"When you can identify what's working, you'll know what to double down on," Dumas says. "You'll also be able to identify the things that are holding you back from getting where you want to go, and to brainstorm solutions for those struggles in order to eliminate them in the future."
If you really want to get more done, you have to stop focusing on what you can't do, and start focusing on everything that's going right.
"Practicing gratitude will not only increase your happiness factor, it will also increase your productivity," Dumas says. "When you have a positive attitude and take time out to recognize everything you have to be grateful for, you're able to focus on the many things you have accomplished, versus focusing on things you haven't accomplished, and therefore, you're more likely to gain momentum and get more done."